tv The Situation Room With Wolf Blitzer CNN March 4, 2010 7:30pm-8:00pm EST
paterson's strongest supporters will be gathering there. i talked to former mayor david jenkins today who remains very supportive of the governor. he had lunch with him today at the yield club, along with a 13-year-old blind young man who wanted to meet the governor. he said the governor was in good spirits, and mr. jenkins believed that governor paterson should remain in office until the investigation is done. he doesn't see any need for the governor to step down before attorney general cuomo completes his investigation. >> because al sharpton and some of his friends, they're meeting in harlem, as you know, roland, right now. do you think they'll urge the governor to step down? >> no. these are people who support him. he made it clear in his administration that african-americans have gotten four times more business in terms of state investment as a result of his performance as well, so you have folks who understand what his impact is as governor. i mean, obviously for the
nation, and this is really a new york issue as opposed to a national issue, but the fact of the matter is you really don't know. there are people who are supportive. likely with some, they will say, look, you have to go, but like donna said, wait until the investigation is over. i never said whether you're black, hispanic, white or whatever, why you would tell somebody to get out of office before the investigation is done. that's why you have those things. >> it was difficult with charlie rangel, though. there wasn't an investigation. he was given an admonition by the house ethics committee and he stepped down temporarily by the ways ask means committee. >> rangel felt that staying as chair, it was a distractions. he wanted the house democrats to move faorward on this jobs bill they're doing, on health care, and i thought it was appropriate to step aside to allow another person -- in this case sandy levin -- to take over the work of that committee. >> i'm trying to figure out, though, how seven people can go
on a trip, six people are cleared, and one person says, you should have known but the other six knew. i'm still trying to figure that out. i don't understand literally how seven people can go on one trip, but the other six should have known one person was cleared. that makes no sense to me. >> i spoke to someone from the national urban league yesterday, and i asked him if he felt some blinders out there are asking black leaders if they're fit to a double standard. this is what he said to me. >> i think that's still the case that african-american elected officials are going to experience a greater degree of scrutiny in many cases. >> do you agree with him, roland? >> first of all, you've seen individuals on a local level in certain parts of the country who believe they've been targeted by certain attorneys. i would say any political official. if someone busts you for bribery
or corruption, if you don't do it, if you're not involved, then you have no issues. what i'm suggesting to anybody is don't get involved in any controversial or messy stuff where they can throw your behind in prison. but there are people out there who do believe, based upon many examples where they have been targeted for unnecessary reasons. it's based upon the people in other parts of the country. >> what so few black elected officials in this country, when one african-american makes a mistake, clearly sometimes you think it's being blown out of proportion. >> donna brazil, roland martin, guys, thank you very much. let's go back to the pentagon right now. there is a developing story over there. a shooting. chris lawrence is standing by. chris, tell us what's going on. >> yeah, wolf, we've been pretty much locked here in the pentagon for the past hour ever since
this shooting happened. what the pentagon police are now saying is that two of their officers, the pentagon police officers, have been shot outside of the metro entrance to the pentagon. they also have the shooter in custody now, and the situation seems to be calming down somewhat. there was a loudspeaker announcement just about 20 minutes, a half hour ago that told everybody basically that, you know, you can't leave, you can't come in right now, the pentagon is locked down while they secure that area. just to give you an idea of what we're talking about, because you hear pentagon, you hear metro entrance. there is a metro stop here at the pentagon that's used by thousands of people every day. tons of buses come in out of there. it's obviously a stop on the local washington, d.c. train line as well. you don't have to be an employee at the pentagon or a military person to use the pentagon metro area. you know, it's -- tons of people use it every day. but wait as you come out of the
metro entrance, so you come up the escalator, you come out of the train, there are pentagon police outside, and they're checking our i.d. badges. so what they'll do is you'll walk up there and you'll have to show your i.d. badge, and that way you can go about the extra ten yards or so to actually walk into the building. so it's believed that these were guards who were outside the pentagon, because once you show your badge, what you have to do to get access to even open the door of the pentagon, once you go through there, there are obviously more guards, there's also a vantage point, a secure vantage point for a sniper position. it is the most probably well-fortified area and entrance of the entire pentagon. >> i remember many years ago when i was a pentagon correspondent, chris, it was not all that unusual to get a lockdown when there was some shooting incident in the nearby area. how unique that your experience is what's happening right now. >> well, i think if you said that it was just a shooting at the metro, you know, that could
have happened at any metro stop at anyplace in d.c., maryland or virginia. but the fact that it involved pentagon police officers, i think that's what makes this incident a little more unusual than others, wolf. >> were you anywhere near this incident, chris? >> not really. it's hard to describe, but the metro entrance is one way to get out of the pentagon. there are other ways to get out as well. it's probably about three corridors down. the pentagon is a huge place. we're not that far but we're not that close, either. i don't know if that makes any sense. but basically, it's where -- it's probably the busiest entrance. that's the easiest way to describe it. it's where most people enter and leave the pentagon. but, again, it's only one way -- it's only one of the ways in and out, and, again, it's where most of the pentagon police officers are compared to some of the other entrances and exits where
you might only have one or two officers posted at that post. >> i take it, chris, you didn't hear any gunshots? >> no. no. the way the pentagon is set up, it would be almost impossible to hear anything that happened outside this building. even if it was minutes and minutes of rapid gunfire. if you're inside the building, you're not going to hear anything like that. >> stand by for a moment. jean is also monitoring this story for us. what else are you picking up, jean? >> i think chris has really reported the bare bones from this. what we're hearing from this pentagon protection agency is they believe they have two pentagon officers shot, and they believe they have one person in custody. we really have gotten no detail yet. i think they're still assessing the situation there. there had been reports from some of the local television stations here in washington, including our affiliate w usa, that three people were being transported to a local hospital, but we don't
have independent confirmation of that at this point in time, so really, it's still something very much under development. you know, wolf, that the pentagon is a critical piece of infrastructure here in the washington area. one of those buildings that is very, very highly protected, always has been, but after 9/11, that ramped up even further. this is a protection agency that helps provide security at that building. obviously, they're having a difficult night tonight. wolf? >> we're hearing from the hospital here in washington, d.c., they are now treating three individuals. we believe two of them are the individuals that were shot and one is the suspect in this case. that information just coming into the situation room. as you know, george washington university hospital just across the river from the pentagon. you take the memorial bridge. you get right over to gw, so that's probably the nearest hospital. chris lawrence, what else are you picking up? >> yeah, wolf, here at the pentagon, we're just listening
to -- we're just listening to another announcement come over the loudspeaker basically saying the metro entrance remains closed but the other entrances to the pentagon have now been reopened. so people can leave the pentagon, they can get back in if for some reason they needed to get back in. i think jean made a great point, these pentagon police officers are not uniformed military personnel. they are not military police or mps, so to speak, they are a privateized police around the pentagon. >> we'll continue our coverage of that and all other news right after this. his coat is incredibly shiny and soft and very thick. everybody thinks he's the most handsome cat they've ever seen. [ woman announcing ] purina one for indoor cats... unlocks the brilliance of nature... with a natural fiber blend that helps minimize hairballs...
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i guess to recap, we're watching that developing story at the pentagon right now. a shooting incident. two people shot, one suspect apparently in custody. we are told the fbi is on the scene. we'll check back with the pentagon shortly. we'll get you the latest. i just wanted to recap what we know right now. other news we're following, for students right now, you might say a gpa isn't for grade point average but grand protest and anger. look at this. crowds of parents, students and teachers trying to teach lawmakers a lesson in d disobedience. they're mad about tax cuts that canceled classes and made professor layoffs. the biggest cuts that have
happened in the nation's education system, california has seen about $1 billion in state funding cuts between 2008 and 2010. cnn's dan simon is in san francisco watching the story for us. dan? >> reporter: hi, wolf, the crowds have dispersed here, but earlier today there were thousands of student protestors here at san francisco state university and across california. the weather was cooperative today, which was obviously good for the protestors. it was unlike yesterday when we were here on campus trying to get a sense as to why students are so angry. >> it's the middle of a rainy day at san francisco state university. junior akasha perez has finished classes. it would be nice to go home, put the feet up and get dry. but for perez, it's off to work. >> how hard is it taking two jobs and also being a full-time student? >> it's tough. it's really hard. there's not much sleep involved. >> she works here on campus and
also as a waitress. rush says she had to take a second job to offset a 32% increase in tuition this year, a huge jump. >> it was very huge, and a lot of people were upset. they had to drop their classes because they couldn't afford the increase when it happened, so their classes got dropped. >> these are five of her classmates, each with a tale of hardship, each with a message for lawmakers. >> i didn't attend school last semester because i wasn't able to afford it, nor were there classes for me to even have a reason to pay that extra tuition. >> has this been tougher for you financially or because the courses you want just aren't available? >> i think it's a little of both. certain courses are not available, so, you know, it takes years, it case longer than expected to graduate. >> i am sitting on $10,000 in student loans. i'm only in my second year and i come from a low-income family, so they can't help me at all. they can try, but they can't be
much help. >> the cuts have also met the elimination of 300 professors and college employees on campus. and a 10% pay cut for those lucky enough to still have a job. professor jason ferrera teaches ethnic studies. >> it means i'm living as a graduate student or undergraduate all over again. i've been working here five years, and basically month to month, you know. living on my credit cards to get groceries. >> for akasha perez, it has come down to this: either work two jobs or don't go to school. leaning on her parents isn't an option. a reality for her and her classmates. sdp >> this is a commuter campus, a community for students. it's tough. >> and it's going to get even tougher. as far as we could tell, the protest here at san francisco state was entirely peaceful.
earlier there was talk that some students might attempt to overtake a building and occupy it, but i haven't seen anything like that today, wolf. >> thank you. a potential new nightmare for toyota. complaints from drivers are surfacing after toyota supposedly fixed the accelerator. it's speedy alka-seltzer. alka-seltzer plus. rushes relief for all-over, achy colds. the official cold medicine of the u.s. ski team. alka-seltzer plus.
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a suspect in custody. we're told all three was taken to the george washington hospital just across the river. the pentagon has reopened, although we're told that that one door to the metro center, the metro exit to the pentagon, remains closed right now. we'll check back with chris lawrence at the pentagon and see what else is going on. in the meantime, let's check back with lisa. she's monitoring some of the other top stories in the situation room. lisa, what else is going on? >> hi, there, 60 toyota drivers have filed complaints of unintended acceleration after the cars were fixed. as part of a recall of more than 8 million vehicles worldwide the japanese automakers has been installing special parts. the national highway traffic safety administration says if it's not working they can force toyota to come up with a different solution. dramatic video of people stuck in an elevator in taiwan
when the earthquake stuck. at least 12 people were injured and there have also been reports of fire, electricity being cut off. cracks in buildings and bridges and disruption of train service. one question a lot of people are asking, is there any connection among the recent earthquakes in haiti, chile, japan and taiwan and the answer is not likely according to the experts. they say earthquakes are sporadic and unpredictable and believe it is actually a coincidence several relatively strong earth quakes have occurred around the same time. when you take a look at these magnitudes it's interesting we have these happening around the same time, wolf. >> you think about it, haiti, japan, taiwan, i was begin to think there was a connection, too. the experts say it's coincidental. >> experts are saying it's sporadic and a coincidence. >> lisa, thank you. we're going to go back to the pentagon, get the latest.
a shooting incident at the pentagon. two police officers have been shot. a suspect is in custody. all three, we're told, are george washington university hospital right now. we'll check back with chris lawrence when we come back. a.j.? (alarm blasting) (screaming) (phone rings) hello? this is bill with broadview security. is everything okay? no. there's this guy - he just smashed in my door. i'm sending help right now. thank you. (announcer) brink's home security is now broadview security. call now to install the standard system for just $99. the proven technology of a broadview security system delivers rapid response from highly-trained professionals, 24 hours a day. call now to get the $99 installation, plus a second keypad installed free. and, you could save up to 20% on your homeowner's insurance. call now--
let's get a close-up look at the devastation following chile's earthquake. here's cnn's sarah sidner. >> reporter: a mother searches for the most precious thing in her life. she is looking for her 4-year-old son. for five days now she and her husband have been picking through the debris from their home hoping for any sign of him. "if you know my son, please keep
pictures of him. i don't have any pictures left of him. it's very important to me." the boy was last seen inside a boat with his grandfather. both jumped in after the massive earthquake fearing they'd be crushed in the house. "we felt the tremor and her son said, momma, momma, the world is about to end." in a way, it did. family lost their grandfather, young son, and their home. in this town, about 300 kilometers from the city of concepci concepcion, there is a great deal of suffering. dozens dead. and more damage. the sea is just behind me. all you have to do in this city to get an idea of how bad the destruction is here is take a look around. literally turn around in a circle. 360 degrees. and you see devastation literally everywhere. house after house after house flattened. and yet, there are families who have decided to stay overnight to protect what little they have
left. for the gutierrez family, this concrete slab is all that is left of their home. what the tsunami didn't swallow, looters stole. sarah sidner, constitucion, chile. whoa, my cut's still there. mine too. my cut's all better. [ female announcer ] 'cause sara's mom discovered neosporin® with patented technology that heals cuts two days faster than store brands. neosporin®. heals faster than store brands. and over probably isn't giving results you want.
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it's speedy alka-seltzer. alka-seltzer plus. rushes relief for all-over, achy colds. the official cold medicine of the u.s. ski team. alka-seltzer plus. on our political ticker, america's most wanted nabs an in demand guest to celebrate its 1,000th episode. the show's host, john walsh, will interview president obama during the broadcast airing saturday night. the fox tv network says mr. obama will discuss the show's impact during 22 years on the air. the president will discuss his administration's anti-crime policy as well. congratulations to john walsh. episode number 1,000 coming up. wouldn't you ask these guys for their opinions on politics? for decades members of the band, kiss, have been singing about rocking all night and partying every day. jean simmons tells cnn's becky